Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Secularity and Sexuality and My Family

atheist pareting, daughters, sons atheist parent atheist parent
I've got to tell you, this is a subject I've been thinking about so much lately. Most grown ups grew up with had so many weird and awkward issues around sex. I, myself, had the virgin/whore dichotomy to deal with, which is fun. Also in the house that I lived in as a little girl were stacks of pornography in the house and magazine photos of naked women on the walls...but women were to remain VIRGINS.  So,  yeah, my understanding of healthy sexuality took me years go figure out.

Actually discussing sexuality was simply not done when I was a kid. Maybe it was the same for you.

And there is more. But that's all I'm going to say about that except for how determined I was to do it right for my own kids. 

I know you know what I mean.

While I was involved in the church I was always questioning things and I was always confused about why the authority of the church tied women's hands so much. I couldn't understand why only a very narrow definition of sexuality was considered OK. The church organizations that were important to me back then were incredibly rigid and prudish anytime the issue of sexuality was on the table. It kept me in the closet completely.

I remember one time I was working for the Catholic family services organization in pregnancy care and adoptions. The diocese newspaper called me as an agency rep for pregnancy care and asked me questions for a story they were writing. The story was about child care in high schools for teen girls who have babies, seems the caller was looking for the church's authoritative stance on the issue. So the reporter was asking me about it and I thought, HEY, great idea for those girls!  lol

A few days later I get a call from the director of the organization asking me to never speak to a reporter again.  LOL...sometimes I forgot that request and took several more calls from the diocesan newspaper office.

Leaving the church was a tremendous boon on my sexuality work. Figuring out that the church was the source of so much confusion and shame and absurdity actually made it so easy to question everything and to begin to work through so much of the crap in my head.

Move forward a decade or two and I'm married to an absolutely wonderful man who is on the same page with me. We are all for sharing knowledge with our kids as fully as possible with respect for their age...

Turns out I need more time to write about this important subject...stay tuned.

You might also enjoy these past posts:
Sex and God and Shame

Sex Ed
Why Do You Hate God?

1 comment:

  1. For me there was no church to mess up my head. But plenty of the day to day stuff surrounding me. The Virgin/Slut dichotomy pervades every persons life. Not just the girl's life, but also the boy's. Society as a whole isn't raising their boys right. And giving boys the idea that sexuality can only be gauged in this black and white fashion and skewed entirely in their favor has boys genuinely thinking that they can and SHOULD objectify girls. Casual conversations at the dinner table about a girl and sentences like labels like 'sleeping around' or 'easy girl' etc will taint their experience of women. I have two kids, a boy and a girl and their father is in this respect no help at all. He is steeped in that old fashioned thinking (he will be 58 this year) and I wonder how I can raise our son with a different attitude towards women. As to my daughter, she is so amazing and I know that her head is on straight about sexuality. But I think due to her youth she doesn't yet understand that the majority of society will not treat her according to her thoughts on sexuality but on theirs.


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